China/Taiwan Cross-Strait Relations - Retrospect and Prospect: An Address by Dr. Lien Chan
Dr. Lien Chan, Honorary Chairman of the Nationalist Party (KMT) in Taiwan and former Vice President of the Republic of China on Taiwan
Presented by NYU China House in association with Polytechnic Institute of New York University
About Dr. Lien Chan
A statesman and scholar, Lien Chan is the Honorary Chairman of the Kuomintang Party (KMT), as well as the Chairman of both the National Policy Foundation and Lien Chan Foundation for Peace and Development.
Lien was born in Xi’an, Shaanxi, on August 27, 1936, into a traditional family with roots in Taiwan tracing back to hundreds of years. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science at National Taiwan University in 1957, as well as a master’s degree in 1961 and a doctorate in political science in 1965, both from the University of Chicago. He is the recipient of an honorary doctorate from NYU-Poly.
In 1975, Lien was drafted from the academic world and appointed Ambassador to the Republic of El Salvador, and thus began his political career. He rose to the cabinet and became Premier in 1993. He was elected Vice President in 1996.
In the year 2000, he became KMT Chairman. In that capacity, Lien made a historic “journey of peace” to Mainland China in April 2005, during which he met with Chinese Communist Party General Secretary Hu Jintao. Lien became the first KMT chairman to visit the mainland since his government relocated to Taiwan in 1949. Following their meeting, Lien and Hu jointly outlined five points in a vision statement for cross-strait relations, and in so doing, laid a firm foundation for economic cooperation and political conciliation across the Taiwan Strait.
Prof. Xudong Zhang, Director, NYU China House
Dr. David Chang, Chancellor, NYU-Poly
Prof. Jerome Cohen, Co-Director, U.S.-Asia Law Institute, NYU School of Law